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'FRAGILE featuring Claire Hamill' The Robin 2, Bilston, Thursday 11th July 2013
Just a quick note to say what a stonking gig Fragile performed tonight. Josephine Claire Hamill completely nailed it. It was an amazing performance by all.
Yours is no disgrace
And you and I
Mood for a day / The clap
Takes my breath away
Look over your shoulder
Gates of Delirium (Instrumental)
Seven wives of Henry VIII
Owner of a lonely heart
Roundabout and Time and a word
'FRAGILE featuring Claire Hamill' The Rum Store, Carnglaze Caverns, St Neot, Saturday 18th May 2013
Calling myself ‘a fragile virgin’ might be stretching the truth on some levels, but it does at least apply to this evening’s gig at The Rum Store...
The venue is the atmospheric setting of the Carnglaze Caverns near Liskeard in Cornwall. It is a truly unique place. For those that don’t know it, the stage is set back into a cave, which was an old Navy rum store, and has solid acoustics. It also has a constant temperature of 10 degrees, which for the uninitiated can take some getting used to. It’s clear that some of this evening’s punters have been to this venue before. They are the ones who have brought a few extra layers and something soft to sit on!
What did raise the temperature though was the band’s performance. This was the band’s first proper gig with new lead Claire Hamill, and she sure can sing. Of course tackling this music for the first time is going to bring its own challenges, not least the timing of vocals or indeed the delivery of such unique lyrics. Sure Claire made the odd mistake, though to be fair any old Yes gig wouldn’t have been the same without the odd Jon Anderson slip. I like to think that Claire was merely keeping up traditions there!
What’s far more important though is that she has a clear, distinctive and beautiful voice which is more than capable of taking on these classic Yes songs. Also rather like Jon, she has a cheery and good natured disposition which gives you the sense that not only is she enjoying herself but that she wants you to as well.
On lead guitar this evening was another debutant, Oliver Day, and what a fine job he did, taking on many of Steve Howe’s trickier guitar passages. He will have a fine future in this band I’m sure. Max Hunt was always steady on keyboards and shared on vocals with Clare, whilst Martin Clark and Nigel Bromley pounded out the rhythm on bass and drums respectively.
I understand that Pete Greenwood has since joined the band which can only add to the authenticity of the music and the overall sound. I should also add a special mention for founding member Tom Dawe whose courageous battle with motor neuron disease can only be applauded. He was playing his heart out on guitar too and I’m sure all Fragile fans wish him well.
Highlights I thought were fine renditions of ‘Starship Trooper’ and the last section of ‘Gates’ including Claire’s marvellous vocals on ‘Soon’. It struck me that songs such as ‘Time and a Word’ and ‘Perpetual Change’ would suit her very well.
All in all this was great gig and if you ever get to chance to see the band play these timeless Yes classics then don’t miss out. Every indication was that this new Fragile line up will go from strength to strength.
Arlington Arts, Newbury, Saturday 19th November 2011
Newbury Weekly News, Thursday 24th November 2011
Fragile by name, but not by nature
Fragile, at Arlington Arts, Snelsmore, on Saturday, November 19th
Once a group of musicians make a decision to become a tribute band then surely performing the Yes catalogue is one of the most daunting musical challenges to be undertaken. Fragile have not only risen to the challenge but positively relish it and indeed, thrive on it.
On Saturday evening, they had to overcome a sound system full of gremlins which were determined to disrupt proceedings and prevent the quality of performance for which the band have gained their reputation.
However, these musicians may well be 'Fragile' by name but not by nature. They simply got on with the job and from the opening bars of Siberian Khatru, from the Close to the Edge album, to the closing Roundabout, they showed technical proficiency, professionalism and, most importantly, the sheer enjoyment of playing this music which transmitted itself to the audience. A tremendous Heart of the Sunrise from the Fragile album, superbly driven along by the rhythm section of Chris Hook on bass and Russ Wilson on drums followed, and next up was a medley from the early albums including Sweet Dreams, The Prophet and Every Little Thing. An excellent Close to the Edge finished the first set.
After the interval, keyboard wizard Max Hunt gave us a few of Rick Wakeman's tunes before the full band returned with a combination of Astral Traveller, Gates of Delirium and Soon. My favourite Yes song Yours is no Disgrace from the Yes album then lifted the performance to another level and was quickly followed by a superb Owner of a Lonely Heart and an even better Starship Trooper.
This was a stellar performance by a talented group of musicians who have put a lot of hard work into presenting this complex body of work to this high standard. The fact that they are Yes fans themselves, playing to Yes fans, I suspect, makes it an even more rewarding experience for everybody involved. Vocalist Steve Carney and guitarists Bob Illesh and Tom Dawe with the aforementioned Hook, Wilson and Hunt combine to make this show a spectacle which no true Yes fan could possibly resist.
Although I'm not a big Yes fan, it was a great experience to revisit their catalogue and be reminded of the impact they've made on the popular music scene. It was also good that this was a local band in a local venue performing an extremely complicated body of music to such a high level. All in all it was a thoroughly enjoyable evening.
Facebook comments 2011:
Fantastic night out last night, good friends, good curry, BRILLIANT gig. If I had the choice of seeing YES or Fragile again I would chose Fragile without a doubt. Nov 2011
band = Fragile. My first viewing. Well talked up by Dave
Tysoe and with good reason. Got a real feel for the
music and so in sync across the whole group. Excellent .
Excellent. Nov 2011
play the music of Yes with amazing accuracy and authenticity. It's an
absolute delight to be at one of their concerts. Nov 2011
Really enjoyed your performance in Newbury tonight :-) especially owner of a lonely heart! Thanks you! Nov 2011
Saw a yes tribute band last night. What a bunch of talented musicians. the uk yes tribute band is called 'fragile'. Nov 2011
Fantastic Gig last night @ Arlington Arts Ctr. just outside Newbury, Berkshire. UKs best YES tribute band "Fragile" the real deal... Strongly recomend... If you like listening to Yes, or just exceptional musitions, go and see them... Awesome! Nov 2011
Brilliant night.....great show. A rich tapestry of musical genius.........WOW! What a buzz. X Nov 2011
Old Reviews (2008 and earlier):
The Diamond, Sutton -In - Ashfield, Thursday 13 September. By Phil 'Sweet Dreams'
Another excellent night FRAGILE never disappoint !!
Venue was small in size compared to the Robin 2 and although the turnout was not very good, the band put on an AWESOME show. Maybe next time they play at this venue more advertising will be done?
The band played the favourites such as Siberian Khatru, YIND,Perpetual Change ( Nailed IMO - AWESOME ! )
As mentioned by Fragilehowe in his previous post, we were also treated to Sweet Dreams, and what can only be described as a spine tingling version of Revealing Science Of God !!!
I sat there thinking to myself " how the bloody hell does Steve Carney remember all the words to this song "?
Anyone hoping to attend the forthcoming shows will be in for a treat, the guys obviously put in hours of practice to crack this difficult choice of song, after the show everyone in the audience agreed that the guys had given a very polished performance of RSOG.
CTTE is a favourite of the band and I remember the time I first heard this in Crewe a few years back, they took the roof off that night, it just gets better each time I see the guys perform it.
Owner Of A Lonely Heart ..... FANTASTIC....PURE CLASS !!
I'm looking forward to Robin 2 next month when I know we will all have a ball as usual.
YIND & I talked him into making the trip to Wolverhampton to see Fragile & Steve Howe, he was quiet happy seeing the guys last night, can't wait for his reaction to seeing Steve Howe playing with them.
See you all @ Robin 2.
The Diamond, Sutton -In - Ashfield, Thursday 13 September. By Tony
Thanks for the concert last night. Really enjoyed it! You have got 'RSoG' spot on! A friend of mine who gave me a lift so I could get there has now seen the other UK Yes Tribute and Fragile at 'The Diamond' and he thinks that you are the better band of the two. For me I am more diplomatic I think both bands have their strengths.
Robert was as
stunning as ever, he hits those notes ala Steve Howe so often!
the concert, I appreciate donating your time and energy to come up here.
Best wishes for the rest of the tour.
with a certain
degree of apprehension that, accompanied by 3
The Academy, Basingstoke, Sunday 21st October By Paul Freemantle
Hi to everyone out there, I'm new to this group only having recently joined.
I went to my first Fragile gig last Sunday at the Academy in Basingstoke and wow !!! I was stunned by the performance - highlights for me were Perpetual Change, CTTE, Siberian Khatru and of course the maestro Steve Howe's acoustic set.
When Steve and the rest of the guys played "Soon" together the tears were welling up in my eyes - a truly magic moment that brought back a lot of memories of QPR, Reading Festival 75' etc.
I've always been cynical regarding "Tribute Bands" but after seeing Fragile I would just like to say that I'm eternally grateful to you guys for keeping Yes music alive and for performing it so beautifully - I consider being at the gig last weekend a rare privilege.
Thanks also to David Watkinson for signing my copy of "Perpetual Change" !!!
Hope to see everybody again soon.
With warm regards